USD, Franciscan School of Theology forge seminal partnership
The Franciscan School of Theology was first chartered in 1854 as an apostolic college known as Mission Santa Barbara, and remained a center for theological studies and a seminary until 1968 when it moved to Berkeley, Calif., and became known as the Franciscan School of Theology. Recently, the school entered into an affiliation with USD that will lead to a richer education and new opportunities for students from both institutions.
Officials from USD, along with leaders at the Franciscan School of Theology (FST), met at Alcalá Park in the spring to sign the agreement that will benefit the students, the community and the Catholic Church.
“This new affiliation offers opportunities for special academic and program collaborations that will benefit the faculties, students, and communities of both USD and FST,” says Ron Fowler, chair of USD’s Board of Trustees.
Graduate students at USD will have access to FST courses that complement their degree programs, specifically within theological disciplines, and FST students will have access to graduate courses at USD’s School of Leadership and Education Sciences and Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies.
“We are excited about bringing together the spiritual, theological and social riches of the Franciscan tradition and USD’s excellence in contemporary sciences, nonprofit management, public service, peace work and more,” says Father Joseph P. Chinnici, OFM, president and rector of the Franciscan School of Theology.
The partnership will provide opportunities to enhance the capabilities of graduate students to serve in stewardship roles in the Church and other mission-oriented institutions. It will also allow respective faculties and students to collaborate in service, research and other scholarly activities.
“Throughout this long journey towards an agreement, in each person God has revealed the face of goodness, generosity and beauty to us,” Father Chinnici says. “For this, I give great thanks.”